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Fundraiser from fish counter to UK home of seafood

TWO supermarket fishmongers are preparing to walk 134 miles to the home of seafood to raise money for The Fishermen’s Mission.

Fundraiser from fish counter to UK home of seafood

Award-winning Girly Fishmonger blogger Emma McKeating, from Tesco’s Stoke store, and best pal Nicola Rowbotham, from Manchester, have set themselves the challenge with help and support from Flatfish directors Richard and Steve Stansfield.

Passionate about the industry they represent to thousands of customers, they “wanted to give something back to an industry we love,” having been welcomed with open arms in the town they are familiar with.

Emma, 34, said: “When I competed at the British Fish Craft Championship I entered independently and Richard and Steve helped me out massively. I didn’t expect them to, but they did, they were brilliant.

“I have always wanted to do something for the Fishermen’s Mission, we visited the guys at Flatfish and told them we wanted to do something. They then asked how many miles it was from here to there!”

And so it was set, 134 miles from Emma’s fish counter in Stoke to the gates of the Flatfish factory.

Both are accidental arrivals into seafood, having been asked to work the fish counters by Tesco, but now they are gold merit trained. They met online through work, and have forged a strong bond with the town, attending both Humber Seafood Summit and the recent Future of Food event organised by Seafish.

“I hated fish, I couldn’t stand it – the smell, the taste, the feel,” Emma said. “I was the same,” Nicola, 41, added. “I applied for the bakery but I was put on the fish counter and they sent me to Grimsby for three days.”

That was specific training at Humber Seafood Institute, led by Gary Hooper, who as immediate past president of the National Federation of Fishmongers played a key part in bringing the British Fish Craft Championships to Cleethorpes, along with the Stansfields.

“We loved it from the moment we started, and that feeling when you have filleted your first fish, a salmon for me, was amazing,” Nicola said.

The fishmongers’ 11-day trek will begin on April 16, with the aim of raising £2,000.

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